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my son is 4 and a half, hasn't napped since he was 22 months. How do I get him to nap again?

He's been showing the signs of really needing a nap. eyes are tired, he acts hyper and out of control by 6 he's whiney, crazy, and cries at the drop of a hat. Last night he crashed at 6:30 I woke him at 7pm and he was refreshed and stayed awake til 1 am!! this is nuts! but how do I get him to accept naps when he hasn't had one in more then 2 yrs?

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Asked by Anonymous at 4:37 PM on Mar. 17, 2009 in General Parenting

Answers (10)
  • For mine, I just tell them they need to lay still with ONE small toy and rest on the bed quietly until the timer goes off. Well, I usually turn the timer off b/c they have fallen asleep. LOL

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 4:38 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • Hey thats a good idea!

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:45 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • Well even if he won't nap, maybe you could go with quiet time. My son is 2 and naps really well. But if I am watching my nieces, they do not nap and they are 2 and 3. I think they should but their parents don't so whatever. But while my son is sleeping, they have to have quiet time. So, I tell them they can have books on the bed but that's it and then they can also watch a movie. They have to stay there and be quiet during nap time. If they need to get down to use the bathroom, that's fine. But they must take their quiet time. Sometimes, they do end up falling asleep. So maybe he just needs time to relax.

    Answer by DDry at 4:49 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • HUH? Your routine seems way off balance. If he feel asleep at 6:30 why would u wake him up at 7? My son will be 6 next month and sometimes is so tired from his day that he'll fall asleep around 6:30 and won't wake up until the next morning. At 4 1/2 he doesn't necessarily need naps...just a structured bedtime and 10-12 hours a night of sleep.

    Answer by NJMom2Tyler at 5:44 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • You don't. My son stopped napping at 2 yrs old. He napped once in a great while after 2 yrs old. He did have to lay quietly at daycare for 30 minutes and that seemed to be enough. He may be old enough to not need naps. Don't wake him up when he falls asleep at 6:30,let him sleep through the night.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 6:00 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • I would just have him do quiet times for like an hour everyday. Maybe lay with him, maybe just put on a movie with the lights off. If he needs the sleep, he will fall asleep. Just make sure it is early enough in the day and you wake him up after a bit.

    Answer by TanyaR1024 at 8:32 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • I'm a daycare provider so I've seen this alot. I agree with the above posters especially mom2twobabes. With children this age, sometimes they just need some quiet time. You may consider getting a special sleeping bag or one of those folding cushions as a special place for nap only. If you make it a special fun thing for nap only, he'll be excited to use it. Right after lunch is ideal rest time. Also, having a daily schedule will help his body adjust to the rythym of the day. Here's my daycare schedule which I follow on weekends as well since it is what my kids know too. 7:00 wake,shower, brush teeth, dress8:00 breakfast then play in or outdoors 10:00 table activity, 11:00 lunch, 11:45 clean up after lunch, 12:00 rest time, 2:00 wake up (I have toddlers so my older kids only relax for 20-30 minutes then go play on their own), 3:00 light snack and outdoor play 4:00-6:00 parent pick up.
    Sorry so long! Great question!

    Answer by TessaBianca at 9:00 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • Some kids just don't nap. My oldest stopped right around the time she turned 2. She's almost 9 now and only naps if she is sick and it's been that way for almost 7 years.

    If he fell asleep at 6:30 why did you wake him up? That's kind of crazy. He most likely would have slept through the night. At 2 my kids were going to bed at 7pm every night. That's always been bedtime. They need 12 hours of sleep and would be up at 7am which was perfect for me.

    We also did the quiet time with our oldest since she refused to nap. I had 2 younger kids besides her and they needed to nap and I needed a break (that was 3 kids under 3). So when the younger 2 napped she had to do an hour of quiet time in her room. I would crash on the sofa and she would play quietly. Some times she did fall asleep but that was completely over by the time she was 2 1/2.

    Answer by justanotherjen at 9:18 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • my 4.5 sleep schedule is 7pm-7am. he wont take a nap, but hes extremely grumpy come 6 pm. they need all the sleep they can get. i cant believe you woke him up and let him stay up till 1 am. wow

    Answer by jbirchard at 9:33 PM on Mar. 17, 2009

  • I woke him up after sleeping a half hour because I was afraid he would wake up in the middle of the night, wide time I won't wake him

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:48 AM on Mar. 18, 2009

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